The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have picked cornerback Ryan Smith out of North Carolina Central with their fourth-round pick, 108th overall and the 10th pick in the round.
Smith is the second cornerback the Bucs have drafted after taking Vernon Hargreaves in the first round. It seems they're not as happy with Johnthan Banks and Alterraun Verner as they pretended to be initially, though he has a long way to go before threatening their roster spots.
Smith has okay size at 5'11", 189 lbs. and ran a solid 4.47-second 40-yard dash at the combine. Coming out of North Carolina Central, he obviously hasn't faced a lot of competition, but his athleticism stood out at the combine. There's a chance the Bucs see him as more of a safety than a cornerback, though we'll see what Jason Licht has to say after the draft.
A little small for the perimeter, but worth a consideration from the slot. Smith has cover skills and the short area footwork to challenge for a roster spot matching up against full-time slot receivers. Smith doesn't have great size and doesn't appear to have the speed or twitch that teams look for, but his tape shows a player with enough skill to warrant a look.
Smith set a team record for solo tackles with 168, and had seven interceptions in four seasons with the team. He also has some experience as a kick returner, with 28.1 yards per return and one touchdown, so the Bucs may use him there as well. They do have a need at that position.
The Bucs have three more picks today, so stay tuned!
Buccaneers 2016 draft picks
Round 1: pick 9 (9th overall): Vernon Hargreaves, CB, Florida
Round 2: pick 8 (39th overall): Noah Spence, DE, Eastern Kentucky
Round 2: pick 28 (59th overall): Roberto Aguayo, K, Florida State
Round 4: pick 10 (108th overall): Ryan Smith, CB, North Carolina Central
Round 5: pick 9 (148th overall)
Round 6: pick 8 (183rd overall)
Round 6: pick 22 (197th overall, from Washington)